Oct. 22, 2009
District staff members from all levels of the organization attended the National Coming Out Day event sponsored by the LGBT/Straight Alliance ERG on Oct. 22. CEO Beau Goldie welcomed the attendees by highlighting the new Inclusion posters now being posted throughout district offices. Goldie emphasized that the importance of inclusion is to strengthen teamwork.
A presentation, “Coming Out: What is it all about?” was delivered by CONCERN – EAP Counselor Elizabeth Dixon. She discussed common questions about the coming-out process – addressing both the negative and positive aspects of coming out, the types and roles of straight allies, and the role of managers in the workplace.
The most common question asked by attendees dealt with the role of first-level managers in creating an open environment. Staff commented that unspoken acts of openness, such as attending ERG events and having pins and Celebrate Diversity stickers in offices, go far in making the work environment safer and therefore more productive.